Washington, DC's National Mall is not just a prominent city green space. It has a dense concentration of monuments, public buildings and is the center of the Smithsonian Museums. As a result, visitors to the nation's capital who choose to stay in a hotel near the National Mall are also greatly simplifying their sightseeing, as many of the city's attractions are either on the mall or just a short walk away.
Just because a hotel is close to the National Mall does not mean it is necessarily close to everything on the mall. The Lincoln Memorial and the Capitol are separated by a distance of 1.9 miles, so a day of sightseeing can easily include several miles worth of walking. Visitors who are not up to walking on that scale should also consider ease of access to transportation, such as the Metro or DC Circulator bus.
Holiday Inn Capitol
Situated only one block from the National Air and Space Museum, the Holiday Inn Capitol is one of the closest hotels to the National Mall and was labeled as "family-friendly" by Fodor's. The hotel is also two blocks from the Federal Center SW metro station. This Holiday Inn is also situated amid a district comprised mostly of Federal office buildings, so evening dining options in the immediate area are limited.
Hyatt Regency Washington
One of Washington, DC's huge convention-oriented hotels, the Hyatt Regency is a favorite among politicos and lobbyists. While that makes it a place that is always bustling, it enjoys a location that is three blocks northeast of the National Gallery and three blocks southwest of Union Station. The Old Town Trolley tour bus also runs right past the Hyatt's doorstep. That particular corner of Capitol Hill is also crammed with bars and restaurants, so finding a local place to eat and/or go out in the evenings poses little problem.
JW Marriott Hotel
The JW Marriott is a block from the National History Museum, but it's a mammoth city block occupied by the Ronald Reagan Building. Fodor's praised the views of the White House and the mall from the top floors, and rooms are fitted with plug-in televisions that allow guests to watch the news and check e-mail on the same screen. Although the hotel has the feel of a place frequented by movers and shakers, visiting families tend to dominate on weekends.
- national mall image by Ritu Jethani from Fotolia.com